MGF Finds Some Health Care We Can Live With!


Horror Remix made its way back into the DFW area on February 10th. This time around, the theme was Health Care. Each film either took place in a hospital or had a doctor involved, most of the time as a murder suspect. It featured Horror Remix's trademark editing for Visiting Hours, Hospital Massacre (aka X-ray), and The Last Slumber Party. Each of these films was whittled down from their original running times of 90 to 100 minutes to 35 or 45 minutes.

The screening started out a bit roughly this time around, as there were some technical difficulties that made the HR team have to restart the film about 15 minutes into it. After they got that fixed, there was some kind of audio bleed-over they had to take care of. It was obviously a problem with the digital projector and not HR's fault. Some of the crowd started whining and complaining, which to me seemed ridiculous seeing that this was a free event. They even made up for it later by giving away free movie passes.

The first film to get the HR treatment was 1982's Visiting Hours. In the movie, "Deborah Ballin is a controversial middle-aged TV journalist, who is campaigning on air on behalf of a battered woman who murdered her abusive husband, claiming justifiable defense against the so-called victim. But her outspoken views championing women's rights incense one of the studio's cleaning staff, closet homicidal psycho (and misogynist) Colt Hawker whose deep seated despising of all things female occurred from seeing his Mother throw boiling oil in the face of his abusive Father when he was a small child (and who's M.O. is to photograph victims he stabs as they're spasming to death). So much so that he decides there and then to shut her up...PERMANENTLY! Managing to beat her home, he soon dispatches her maid Francine, before turning his rage onto her as she comes home. Despite the brutal injuries he lashes out on her, she manages to survive and is rushed off to the hospital. But undaunted he catches up to her in the hospital and, disguised as a florist he enter the building to continue his mission to finish her off...along with anyone else who gets under his skin." This little flick had quite an impressive cast that featured Lee Grant (The Swarm, Damien: The Omen II, Airport '77), Michael Ironside (Starship Troopers, Total Recall, Terminator Salvation, Highlander II), and William Shatner. Yes, that's correct. The Shat blesses us with his presence in this little gem. Ironside is almost too good in the role of homicidal maniac Colt Hawker. He likes to wear nothing but women's jewelry sometimes and has a taste for black leather wife-beater shirts.

1982's Hospital Massacre (aka X-ray) was up next. This one had a nice little Valentine's Day flavor to it, which fit perfectly since this was shown on the Wednesday before the big love day. Talk about Horror Remix killing two birds with one stone. What says I love you better than the head of your boyfriend delivered to you in a box to your hospital room? The movie centers around "divorcee Susan Jeremy, who goes to a local Los Angeles county hospital for a routine exam. Through a series of circumstances, she finds herself stranded there while a maniac, dressed in a doctor's surgical mask and clothing, goes around killing all the staff that are associated with her. Could it possibly be the psycho Harold, whom killed a friend of Susan's on Valentine's Day 19 years earlier? If so, there's no telling what he has grown up to look like since Susan has not seen Harold in all that time." The only actor in this film that was recognizable to me was Barbi Benton, who played guest starring roles in tons of 80's TV shows like Fantasy Island, The Love Boat, ChiPs, Charlie's Angels, and several others. This movie had some good kills in it and actually made me want to see the whole thing. The doctor in this film was one of the worst actors I've ever seen. Every time he was on the screen was a joy. And what was up with the two nurses who were always accompanying him everywhere like bodyguards?

Last and most certainly least was The Last Slumber Party from 1988. This movie was so beautifully horrendous. It had everything an 80's slasher flick should have - dumb high school chicks, idiotic jocks that drink through the whole movie, and a poor nerd who gets picked on mercilessly and finally snaps. In it, "Linda, Tracy and Chris celebrate by having a slumber party at Linda's house on their last day of high school. A few boys drop by and the beer flows like wine. Just good, clean, fun-loving kids. But the girls have another visitor, one they don't yet know about. Hiding in the house is a homicidal maniac who has just escaped from a mental hospital. Armed with a scalpel, the nut slashes a little here, a little there as he sneaks from room to room. One by one the guests start disappearing. What evil lurks there? What nightmare world have they entered?" It had hands down some of the worst acting I've ever seen. Do you know how hard it is to keep saying that after going to so many Horror Remixes now? The doctor / father was gloriously horrible. This was definitely one of those movies where you are cheering for the killer to off the partying girls and jocks. One of the girls has a habit of making homosexual references every time she name-calls someone. Definitely the 80's.

What Horror Remix would be complete without the witty commentary of Thunderclap and Cheesecake? They entertained the crowd with their jokes and reviews of the films. One of their sisters makes a guest appearance adding to the humor.

I think the Horror Remixes are definitely catching on well. They are branching out into different states and seem to be getting more frequent. They're not as spread out as they used to be. It seems like they're doing a new one every couple of months now instead of quarterly. I'm not complaining by any means. In my opinion, the more the merrier. I can't wait for the next one. (Review by Eric Shirey)

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